Too early to write them off
NBA BUZZ - Bobby Motus (The Freeman) - October 30, 2019 - 12:00am

For five seasons, they went to five NBA Finals appearances with three titles to show. They were the league’s elite and were so used to frustrating any other team pretending to grab the privileged status.  But nothing ever stays permanent in this world that things will always change.  Dynasties will rise and in time, will fall.

Kevin Durant left the Golden State Warriors in free agency, Andre Iguodala was traded, Shaun Livingston decided to retire and Klay Thompson is out probably for the rest of the season with a torn ACL.  Starting center Willie Cauley-Stein has a foot injury and back-up center Kevon Looney likewise have hamstring and nerve issues.  Both are indefinitely out.   Stephen Curry and Draymond Green are the only healthy remnants of that super team.  

There will be some adjustments to a new environment.  From the almost magical Oracle Arena in Oakland where fans often can change the flow of the game (it was nicknamed Roar-acle precisely because of the loud fans), the Warriors had now moved to the billion-dollar, state-of-the-art Chase Center along the docks of San Francisco.

With eight new players who obviously are not yet fully in synch with the Warrior system, they had two blowout loses on opening week, without even holding a lead.   In those two games, the usually on-target Curry was only 4-of-20 from beyond and because they’re mostly newbies and second year players, defense was a serious issue, allowing opponents to shoot more than 80% within 3 feet of the basket.  

The usually noisy Golden State fans had been unusually quiet on social media that fans of other teams found enough ammunition to rile and ridicule the bad start.  But no matter how bad things are, something good eventually came out which will make Warrior fans come alive and retaliate with their own vitriol.  The NBA has an 82-game schedule and two consecutive blowout loses do not define a team’s overall performance.

Led by new addition D’Angelo Russell, sophomore Damion Lee, Green and Curry who combined for 89 points, the Warriors won their first game for the season in a high scoring match, sending the hapless New Orleans Pelicans to their fourth straight loss, 134-123.

This is not the Warrior team we had known for the last five years and expectations are not high.  They probably will be at the playoffs but getting into their sixth consecutive NBA Finals is a long shot, considering that the two Los Angeles teams had gotten better.

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